Talking Points: Juventus 2 AS Monaco 1 – Cardiff calling

Talking Points: Juventus 2 AS Monaco 1 – Cardiff calling

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Juventus booked their place in the Champions League final in Cardiff with a 4-1 aggregate victory over AS Monaco.

Goals from Mario Mandzukic and Dani Alves saw Juve win 2-1 on the night, consolidating a 2-0 lead from the first leg.

Mandzukic, who was named man of the match, opened the scoring in the 33rd minute with a tap-in that rebounded off the goalkeeper after his first headed attempt from a Dani Alves cross.

Alves made it 2-0 in the 44th minute with an outstanding volley off his right foot, beating Danijel Subašić to hit the back of the net.

Kylian Mbappé scored in the 69th minute after tapping away past Gigi Buffon from Joao Moutinho’s cross, and even though Monaco launched an onslaught from there, the goal was merely a consolation.

Juve progressed to the Champions League final in Cardiff on 3 June where they will meet either Atletico Madrid or Real Madrid.

Juve take no chances on Khedira

Juventus substituted Sami Khedira off early in the ninth minute after it looked like he injured his hamstring. With one eye on the final, coach Max Allegri did not risk the German.

Luckily for the Bianconeri, their replacement was more than able. Claudio Marchisio came on in his stead, and the midfielder enjoyed a terrific showing in the semi-final against the principality side.

Dani Alves MVP of the semi-finals

The Brazilian was involved in all four of Juventus’ goals. Alves assisted both goal in the first leg, whipped in the cross for the first goal of the second leg and scored himself for the fourth.

The full-back is more than proving his worth to La Vecchia Signora after joining for free in the summer.

First goal conceded since November in the Champions League

When everybody said Juventus were defensively terrific in this competition, they were pointing to this statistic, which has now been broken. The last team Juve conceded to was Sevilla in the final game of the group stage, which they won 3-1.

This is also only the Italian champions’ third goal they have conceded in the competition, the least of any team. Young Mbappe’s strike was too little, too late for Monaco. 

Juventus’ second final in three years

This is the Italians’ first venture back into the final since their devastating 3-1 loss to FC Barcelona in Berlin two years ago. This time, there is a general consensus from the footballing world that the Bianconeri are stronger tactically and mentally.

They have learned from the loss to Barcelona in the final and the elimination to Bayern Munich last season. Juventus fancy their chances as the most balanced team in the competition, the best defensively and can slug it out with the best of them offensively. The most likely matchup is Juventus vs Real Madrid. This would be a rematch of the 1998 final.

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